The slain soldiers were all personnel of the 43rd Mechanized Company under the Army’s 4th Mechanized Battalion stationed in Poona Piagapo, according to a report from the Armed Forces’ Western Mindanao Command.
The military declined to name the soldiers as their families have to be informed of the incident.
It said the civilian fatality remains unidentified.
Lt. Gen. Corleto Vinluan Jr., Wesmincom chief, said the incident occurred at the boundary of Poona Piagapo and Pantao Ragat around 8:45 a.m.
Troops immediately went to the area upon learning the incident, then found the four dead persons all with bullet wounds, he said.
Lt. Col. Domingo Dulay, 4th Mech Bn commander, said the three soldiers were on a motorcycle en route to the market when the incident happened.
Responding troops conducted pursuit operations and coordinated with police for investigation, he added.
“We are still trying to establish the circumstances,” 2nd Mechanized Brigade commander Brig. Gen. Facundo Palafox said for his part.
Maj. Gen. Generoso Ponio, AFP Joint Task Force ZamPeLan commander, said all available resources will be used to identify and neutralize the perpetrators.